The recent Making Room: New Models for Housing New Yorkers exhibition of real life design solutions, which ran at the Museum of the City of New York, was sparked by a growing disparity between planning codes and actual need currently, small apartments (defined as less than 400 sq ft) are prohibited in many areas of Manhattan, yet the reality is that one-third of all households are single people living alone – and this doesn’t count the large number of singles forced to share, Friends-style, because of prohibitive housing costs.

Sarah Watson, deputy director of New York City’s Citizens Housing & Planning Council, which initiated the Making Room project, says the choice is simple. With more people moving into cities (two-thirds of the world’s population will be living in cities by 2050, the World Bank estimates), we can either build up, or design smarter. And those smart designs should also take into account that, statistically, more of us are either staying single, or becoming “suddenly solo”.